Tuesday 8 January 2013


Efficient enough thriller delivering its quota of fights (both with and without guns), chases, twisty plot devices, red herrings - and all needing Tom Cruise in super-sleuth mode to solve  the mystery with jaw-dropping intuition and truly amazing powers of deduction.

Beginning with an apparently random shooting of five members of the public, this scene has acquired a heavy significance because of recent events in the U.S.A. The suspect for the shootings, in an apparently open and shut case, is soon arrested and during questioning enigmatically calls for the title character. So enters T.C. with a blurry past, which just begs for him to be distrusted. But does his being called out from obscurity deter him from trying to fathom out what exactly did happen - and to uncover the killer's motivation? No, it jolly well does not! His unerring ability to suss out the odd suspicious word, which to us mere mortals might have gone unnoticed, pays dividends - allowing him to get to the heart of the matter in time.
Stalwart actors such as Robert Duvall and Richard Jenkins add watchability to the proceedings - and it was good to see British actor David Oyelowo in a major role. Rosamund Pike acquits herself well too. And it would be perverse not to mention the curious, though welcome, brooding and powerful presence of famed director Werner Herzog who doesn't have many lines, but then he doesn't need them.

Reasonable enough entertainment, though ultimately lacking that 'something' to make it special...................6/10


  1. I so loath Tom Cruise that this is one I'll never see. But, I've read reviews that said basically what you said (except you rated it more generously). Very kind.

  2. You use very strong language re Little Tom, Mitch. Although not sharing your extreme hostility against him I've never quite seen what he's done to deserve the 'superstar' status he's now had for decades. But I find him a tolerable presence which doesn't really affect my feelings of whether I want to see any film which he happens to be in.
    This one was not that far removed from 'Mission Impossible' territory in terms of fighting against the odds - and, of course, coming out as 'champ'. But it was passable enough - and I have seen plenty worse..

  3. I marvel where you find these; most of the time I haven't hear of them ut it is fun to read about them.

    1. It's thanks to my local art-house cinema, Dr Spo - they are the ones who 'find' the out-of-the-way films, though even of those I still see only about half of what comes round.
      But 'Jack Reacher' had a splash general release because of Cruise - and this film which went to all the big multiplexes.